GROWING up I was never mad on music.
All that dashing down the record shop for the latest release after taping the top 40 from the radio didn’t do much for me.
I was probably spending too much time trying to sneak into the bookies for Hackney and Crayford on a Saturday morning to be bothered about Adam Ant and his mates.
I’ve only ever paid to go to two concerts – and one of those was Neil Diamond.
But one of my pals was mad on Big Country. He was always dashing off someone to see the Scottish band in concert.
I’d forgotten all about them until this summer. That was when Big Country the horse entered my life.
He started off in Ireland before being snapped up to join Mick Appleby – Rutland’s best trainer.
Now Appleby might be Rutland’s only trainer but that’s not faint praise. He’s very good.
And I reckon he’s going to win the Cambridgeshire with Big Country (3.35).
He’s only been nudged up a pound for his unlucky second behind Ballet Concerto in York’s John Smith’s Cup in July.
Considering the winner went on to win a brace of Group 3 prizes that looks lenient. Trip, ground and the big field all look ideal for Big Country.
KANE THE BOOKIES
Premier League 2017-18 top goalscorer – What are the odds and who should you bet on?
The stars of the future are on show earlier on the card. I really fancy Beckford (2.55) in the Middle Park Stakes.
He found seven furlongs too far last time and the ground was a bit quick when runner-up to Sioux Nation at the Curragh in August.
He’s trained by Gordon Elliott – more used to training Cheltenham winners – and I’m confident he’s up to this class.
Well-named Clemmie (2.20) – a sister to 2,000 Guineas hero Churchill – is my pick in the Cheveley Park Stakes and unbeaten Roaring Lion (1.50) should go well in the Royal Lodge Stakes.
Over at Haydock, King’s Pavilion (2.05) is my best bet. He simply loves testing ground and seems to be in the form of his life.
- £3 win Big Country
- £3 win Beckford
- £2 win Frangarry
- £1 each-way acca Big Country, Beckford, Shanghai Glory, King’s Pavilion
Mayleaf Shine (2.40) is another who will like the heavy ground and it will also be good for Shanghai Glory (3.15).
He won the race on the unfavoured stands’ side in the Great St Wilfrid at Ripon last time having run well in the Stewards’ Cup. A race like this must drop his way soon.
And I must mention Frangarry (8.20) at Chelmsford this evening – he’s got a great chance.
But I’ll be making sure I’ve got a ticket to watch Big Country hit concert pitch in the Cambridgeshire.
Hopefully it will bring back some good memories of my music-mad mates while morning greyhounds was more my gig.
The other was Eric Clapton, by the way.
Templegate’s TV tips
- 1.50 Newmarket – Roaring Lion: ‘Unbeaten and looks up to this level’ (add to your betslip)
- 2.05 Haydock – King’s Pavilion: ‘Loves this ground and the yard are in form’ (add to your betslip)
- 2.20 Newmarket – Clemmie: ‘Still improving and a classy sort’ (add to your betslip)
- 2.40 Haydock – Mayleaf Shine: ‘Finally hit top gear and ready to go’ (add to your betslip)
- 2.55 Newmarket – Beckford: ‘Today’s trip should be ideal’ (add to your betslip)
- 3.15 Haydock – Shanghai Glory: ‘Has stacks going for him’ (add to your betslip)
- 3.35 Newmarket – Big Country: ‘Well weighted and the best is still to come’ (add to your betslip)